Small Seeds, Big Hope

Small voices, laughing and talking excitedly as the mid-day sun shines heavy upon a tin-roof radiating heat upon tiny heads nervously sitting on the uneven floor. Dirty feet, loosely hugged by tattered sandals and framed by the fraying cuffs of school uniform pants, swing and sway to the sudden outburst of joyous song. Energy fills each face and the atmosphere is electrified by the brilliance of young minds learning and growing into their unlimited potential. This is the Kiang’ombe School, a place of learning and nourishment once abandoned and empty, now filled with the hopeful children of the Kiang’ombe village in Kenya. The people of the village realized that if their community was to escape the terrible throes of poverty and despair, that it would need to provide education, nourishment and community to its youth. The elders and leaders entrusted a Portland based initiative called Ameena Project with this task. The good folks of Ameena were able to gain funding for this school and the hundreds of small children that live in the surrounding area were immediately positively impacted. It is truly an amazing story of how a small organization can impact so many lives.027-930x480Tanager is proud to announce that we were able to raise $500.00 in support of this amazing project through designating a portion of our wholesale and retail sales of our now out of stock coffee that was grown a mere 40+ miles from the school. Ironically, the coffee named after the washing station it was processed at in the Kabare region, shares the same name as the school and community: Kiang’ombe. Ameena’s administrative staff is completely volunteer run which means 100% of these funds will go to the Kiang’ombe schools day to day operations. Ian May, arepresentative from Ameena, explained to me that since their project is so small, they do not have designated budgets and that all donations go to a general fund. However, the impact can be measured by seeing some examples of how far $500 can go:

* This money would cover 3500 individual meals for the children of the school, or
* It could cover the cost of 18 children attending the school for 1 month, meals included, or 3 kids for 6 months
* Ameena also sponsors kids who have graduated their program and attend other higher grade schools and it would cover the costs of 7 children for a year!

This was not only a fun opportunity to support a great organization, but it also fully embodies the type of projects that Tanager is eager to partner with locally in Portland, OR as well as in the coffee growing regions, directly impacting the farmers and communities our coffee is grown.

The most important part of this whole story is that you, my friends and customers, were the link that enabled us to invest in a beautiful community in Kenya. Because of your belief in Tanager’s mission of roasting excellent coffee, we have created a bridge where we can hear these wonderful stories and be a part of real peoples lives from an isolated place on the other side of the world.Lets keep this momentum moving forward and see where it will take us. Just by doing simple things, like sharing a cup of coffee with a friend or loved one, we can empower the stories of the people who grew and nourished the coffee where it was grown and the communities neighboring the farm.

Please consider supporting Ameena Project further: Check out their website